Downtown Edmonton strip club proposal rejected

A proposal for strip club in a historic downtown building was rejected by Development Appeal Board after hearing from businesses and condo residents
The company behind the Crazy Horse Gentleman's Club wanted to open in Canada Permanent Building in downtown Edmonton. (CBC)

A proposal for strip club in downtown Edmonton was rejected by Development Appeal Board on Thursday after businesses and condo residents expressed their opposition to the project. 

Last month, the city approved a development permit that would allow the Crazy Horse Gentleman's Club to open in the historic, but vacant, Canada Permanent Building, north of Jasper Avenue on 100th Street.

The company behind the club told the hearing that the bar would fit well with the idea of a large entertainment district around a new arena.

The club's owners, which would be next to a condo building and across the street from a hotel, said they are aware of noise concerns and promised that the bar would not be loud, although they do not intend to soundproof its walls.

Residents living in the McLeod Building next door to the club say they'll become known as the people who live next "to the strippers." They admit leaving the building empty isn't ideal either.

The Westin Hotel said the bar will chase customers away, while Oxford Properties, which owns and operates City Centre Mall two blocks away, said it will reconsider its $30 million face lift planned for the mall if the club goes ahead.

"If we're just going to end up fighting what is already happening and we have an increase in crime, that's not great for us," said Dean Wulf, director of real estate management for Oxford. 

Crazy Horse owner Ian Allen rejected that argument. He said that the club will be well-operated and would have security measures. 

"Is this little club such a big deal that people wouldn't invest millions of dollars?" he asked. "It doesn't add up to me and I don't think it's credible at all."

City planners admitted the initial decision to approve the club was made without considering how it could impact the growth of residential units. 

The Crazy Horse may consider appealing the ruling in court. 

With files from CBC's Gareth Hampshire


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